Random Scribbles · writing

The Tragic Story of Mr. and Mrs. J. Sprat

Corpulant



Jack was rawboned and hollow-cheeked; he was as thin as a rake
His pursy bride was not
She leaned toward the ‘well upholstered’, rounded, ‘broad in the beam’

They met at an “All You Can Eat Buffet”
Due to dietary restrictions – bolstered by mating preferences
Immediate attraction on both parts ensued

Love at first sight, as it were
The courtship – aggressive
The marriage came quick

A match made in heaven, until they got sick
Jack developed a rare hemorrhagic disease resulting from fat malabsorption
His corpulent wife was stricken with severe coronary heart disease

They were both taken too young
Both were taken too young


 

Random Scribbles · Uncategorized

Questions (unanswered)

link it here:

https://pressingpatience.com/2018/04/19/questions-unanswered/



So I saw this on Marilyn’s blog, Serendipity, and I was entertained by it. I figured I might have a go too. Gracias to Willow for asking.

Do you have a nickname? What do you prefer to be called?
In the Navy my name was Dad. My kids still call me that.

Do you have books on your shelf (ereader) that are begging to be read?
I’m working on “Y is for Yesterday” right now. It won’t take long.

Are you a doodler? What do your doodles look like?
Poetry or flash fiction

What do you do if you can’t sleep at night?
Read or write

How many days could you think you would last in solitary confinement?
I could last forever. I used to live on a submarine and, I enjoy my own company just fine.

Do you save old greeting cards and letters or do you toss them away?
I have some old ones. They are handmade by artists I admire. I save them. Store bought ones are normally recycled.

Who is the biggest pack rat you know?
My great-aunt Clint, she never threw anything away. Had four houses filled with stuff, and drove a ’40-something DeSoto. She passed away in an earthquake.

Were/are you a good student?
No.

How often do you look at yourself in the mirror?
I have no idea.

What is the strangest thing you believed as a child?
I actually believed that adults, for the most part, knew what they were doing.

Do you re-gift items that have been given to you?
Maybe… why? Did you get something from me that you recognize?

Do you know the difference between a crocodile and an alligator?
One has a long narrow nose; the other – less narrow

Do you still read the newspaper?
There is nothing but advertising in the ones here now. I watch the morning news and weather on TV.

Are there any animals that frighten you?
Humans

Are you a collector of something? If so, what do you collect?
Woodworking tools, you can never have enough routers.

What is something about yourself that you hope will change, but probably never will?
I’ve never won the lottery. I hope that will change, but doubt it ever will. Does that count?

What’s a strange occurrence you’ve experienced but no one believes you?
See this: https://tnkerr.wordpress.com/2014/05/16/daily-prompt-worldly-encounters/

What’s something that amazes you?
Babies are the most amazing.
I often consider the difference between a liar and a storyteller to be insignificant and yet only one is socially acceptable. That’s pretty amazing too, although not as amazing as babies.

Do you prefer the blunt truth or would you rather people temper their words?
It depends on what they are telling me.

What’s one thing you’d rather pay someone to do than do yourself?
Pour concrete

What are the qualities that tend to draw you to someone new?
I like open, honest, a quick smile, and a good sense of humor

If you had to change your first name, what would you change it to?
McCool, it was my Grandfather’s name.

Do you believe ignorance is bliss? Why or why not?
No, I don’t, but you’ll never know why ‘cause I’m not telling.

What (if anything) do you consider unforgivable?
Mistreating others

Do you ever break out into song just because you feel like singing?
This often happens when I’m driving


Random Scribbles · writing

Reading at Night

 



Kenny sat his bucket down beside the back door and peeked in through the screen. He couldn’t see anyone, but he heard his mom knocking around in the kitchen. He wasn’t really worried about her and he wanted to go the other direction anyway. He was, however, worried about any chance encounter he might have with Dad.

Dad would be royally pissed off if he knew what Kenny was up to today, but Kenny didn’t care. He was pissed off himself. “Dad could just bite it for all I care,” he thought.

Last night Kenny had been up reading late in his room. He knew his parents wouldn’t approve; he knew the risks, but he’d been reading the new Tarzan book by Edgar Rice Burroughs and, it was exciting. Kenny got pulled in to the narrative and had tented the blanket up over his head and lit the pages with his flashlight. When Dad came in and ripped Kenny back to suburban Ohio from the jungles of Africa, he had made his displeasure very clear to his son.

“Damnit Kenny, what the hell do you think you’re doing?” he had yelled. “You should have been asleep hours ago!” Dad had confiscated both the torch and the novel. “If you’re going to read, do it before bedtime and read something worthwhile! Don’t read tawdry trash like this, this… cheap crap!”

When Dad confiscated things he always hid them. Sometimes he’d give things back but most often, not. His favourite hiding place was the hall closet. There was a high top shelf where he could put things and forget about them.

Kenny listened and sure enough he heard the closet door open and shut. If he was lucky, both the book and the torch had been secreted there. Not so lucky: maybe only one or the other. He lay awake seething with anger until an hour after he heard his parents go to their bedroom. When he was certain that they were asleep he crept from his bed, retrieved the step ladder from the mud room, and climbed up to see what was on the top shelf of the hall closet. He found his Tarzan book. Beneath that he found another novel he did not recognize, but figured it was his sister’s. The ‘mystery’ book had Harlequin printed across the top and the title seemed to be, “The Starlight and His Servant”. He folded it and stuffed it in the back pocket of his trousers so he could give it back to Monica. His Tarzan book, he clutched in his hand. The torch wasn’t there.

Back in his room he slid his book between the mattress and the box spring. He would have to look for his torch in the morning.

The next morning the flashlight was nowhere to be found. Kenny realized that he would have to find an alternative light source to read in bed tonight. The first thing he did was get Mom’s mop bucket and a roll of aluminum foil from the pantry. He rinsed the bucket with the hose in the backyard and scrubbed it with a brush till it was clean. A little before noon, when the sun was bright, Kenny took the bucket to the school and carefully placed it where the light reflected off the bright white side of the building. He sat down next to it and waited. Three and a half hours, he sat in the school yard, waiting. When he thought the time was right he unrolled two equal lengths of aluminum foil and folded the edges together to make a single piece that was wide enough to cover the top of the bucket.

Quickly, he slapped the foil atop the pail and carefully sealed it around the rim. He headed home with his bucket filled with more than three hours of sunshine. He thought that would be enough for him to finish Tarzan of the Apes, tonight. The bucket was too big to take beneath the covers, though. He thought that would not be a problem. He figured he would read in the closet.

Kenny sat his bucket down beside the back door and peeked in through the screen. He couldn’t see anyone, but he heard his mom knocking around the kitchen. He wasn’t really worried about her and he wanted to go the other direction anyway. He was, however, worried about any chance encounter he might have with Dad. When it seemed that the coast was clear he eased the screen open and snuck inside the house. Hurrying down the hall, he made it safely to his room, crossed the floor and hid the pail in the back of the closet.

Mission accomplished! Dad had not been spotted and, therefore had no inkling of Kenny’s scheme.

In a conscious effort to look innocent and inconspicuous he strolled down the hallway, whistling under his breath. He paused in front of Monica’s door and knocked.

He heard, “WHAT?” from behind the closed door.

“Mon, it’s me Kenny.”

“Go away, runt!”

“Monica, it’s important.”

The door swung open and his sister stood staring scathingly at him. He fished the book he assumed to be hers from his hip pocket and held it out to her.

“Oh my God! Kenny? Where? Never mind where. Thanks!” she grabbed his shoulders and kissed him on the lips, snatched the book and slammed the door in his face.

He immediately started wiping his mouth with the tail of his tee shirt as he walked toward the kitchen, and was still wiping his mouth when he ran into Mom.

“Kenny, there’s milk and cookies on the kitchen counter. Why don’t you go have some? Have you seen your sister?”


Last week, I had the crazy idea of putting light into a bucket and thought it was an idea that warranted some consideration here. I wrote a couple of things incorporating it. This is one of them.

Random Scribbles · writing

The Texture of Beige

Haibun



The smell of petroleum product permeates the cool clear air. Fluids drain from the overturned automobile to the worn surface of the track on which it lies. The driver is unnaturally silent and still. Wildlife gives a wide berth to the scene. Tonight the rains will come to scour the road; clearing the way for scavengers to do their part in the morning.

Dawn watches and crows
begin feasting as vultures
and coyote wait.

Random Scribbles · writing

Random Thoughts About Poetry

Whiling away some time



Lyrics linger in the wake of her passing, and the memory of her scent. The floral arôme that falls lazily to the pavement and lingers.

Oh, to hear the poem shouted by the fog creeping silently up the quiet streets of this decaying seaside town.

The wet smell of the swamp arrives ripe with rhyme and emotion.

Verses flutter earthward from the limbs of the Ginko where they wait to be collected by groundskeepers and hidden from our sight: forever.

Song lives in the words of the poet and the lingering drops of a summer shower.


This Vet group has prompted me to think.

Daily Prompt · Random Scribbles · writing

Daily Prompt; Sandwich

Daily Prompt; Sandwich



Butch waited for Gerald to get close then stepped around the corner, “Gimme yer fuckin’ lunch money, Twink!”

“I don’t have any money, sir.”

“Don’t lie to me. I’ll smash you. Turn yer pockets out.”

Gerald set his things on the linoleum floor and did as he had been asked. All he had was a small pocket knife. Butch took it.

“How are you gonna eat without lunch money?” Butch asked. He poked Gerald in the belly and sneered, “Yer obviously not missin’ any meals.”

Gerald pointed at the paper bag stacked atop his books, “I brought my lunch.” He said and looked Butch in the eye.

“Wadda ya got? Gotta boloney sammich? Got some o’ them wavy tater chips? Maybe some chocolate chip cookies? I like chocolate chip cookies.”

“No sir, I don’t eat a lot of sandwiches. I have grilled chicken and roasted vegetables wrapped in a flour tortilla with a garlic aioli. I brought some of those new Goldfish crackers, and I have apple slices for dessert. I have a lot. I’d be happy to share with you.”

A puzzled look crossed Butch’s face, “You fuckin’ kiddin’ me?”

“No sir, I’m on my way to the Cafeteria now. Come with me.”

Butch thought for a few seconds before nodding his head, “OK, let’s go.”

Gerald picked up his stuff and they two boys continued down the hall towards the lunchroom. “May I have my pocket knife back sir?”

“Don’t push yer luck Twink.”

“Sorry, sir. Could you call me Gerald instead of Twink? My name is Gerald.”

Butch slapped him on the back, “Gerry, I ken call you Gerry, but I’m not gonna call anybody Gerald.” They got to the lunchroom and paused to look around.

“There’s an empty table over there in the corner,” intoned Gerald.

“I don’t like that one. Let’s go take that one over there,” Butch pointed towards a table by the window where three or four of the Student Council members were sitting.

“There’s no seats over there.”

“Come on Gerry, we’ll chase em off.” He grabbed Gerald’s jacket and pulled him along.

Daily Prompt · Random Scribbles · writing

Help Wanted

Daily Prompt; Eclipse



A good part of my adult life was spent working for The Firm. I didn’t drive fast cars, assassinate despots, or steal state secrets. I was more of an indoors type. I would sit in a building on the outskirts of some small, usually European town, surrounded by radio equipment, video equipment, and other electronic gizmos. My job was to monitor things. I was more of an “Electronic Spy” than a “Physical Spy”. I listened, watched, and reported.

I’ve retired now and it took me awhile to figure out what to do with my golden years. I have no family. No wife, no children. I have lots of money and speak seven languages pretty fluently. I tried arts and crafts but I can’t even draw a straight line, and don’t even get me started about the hazards of decoupage. It didn’t take long for me to donate my brushes, paints and other supplies to the VA center in the city.

Farming was the next thing on my list but that didn’t work out too well either. My career had been relatively sedentary. I sat around a lot. Farming is hard work for which I was woefully unprepared. I kept the acreage but the land sits fallow, with the exception of about ten acres along the road that I lease to Mr. Coates. He grows stuff there and it makes the property look like an active farm; from the road at least, if you don’t look too hard or too carefully.

I tried working at a repair shop in the city. I can fix almost anything electronic but it’s hard to get excited about repairing a vacuum cleaner or a stereo when you’re accustomed to working on non-linear RF spectrum analyzers and the like. So I got bored and just quit going to work. They called a couple of times but I simply didn’t pick up. Eventually they quit trying.

I think I’ve found my niche now though. I added a shop behind the house and I’ve begun to tint glass. Not like the tinted glass windows on cars but small fine optics I grind the lenses and darken the glass. Grinding the lenses is the easy work; getting the tint right is the challenge. I’m darkening these things up in order to make it safe for the user to view a solar eclipse. I find that the sales are somewhat seasonal and tend to follow the occurrences of events but the demand is high enough during those times that it keeps me busy in my shop all year round. I stockpile inventory and business is good. I’m thinking of taking on an assistant.

Ideally I would like to find someone close to me in age who spoke Sami, Vepsian, Udmurt, Frisian, and Rumantsch but I recognize that is a pretty tall order so I would settle for just Frisian, such a beautiful language.

I would be willing to train the appropriate candidate in the finer points of grinding lenses and tinting eclipse glass. Tools, room and board, along with a generous stipend, will be provided. If you think you’re up for the challenge fax me a resume at (123) 555-3690. Include a recent photo.